making sense of place economics

Green Infrastructure Valuation Toolbox

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Green Infrastructure (GI) is a term which has grown in use in recent years. Although definitions vary, most agree that GI is the network of natural environmental components and green and blue spaces that lie in and around our nation's towns and cities.  GI provides the raw materials for our economy and, like other infrastructure, sets the scene for recreation, tourism and investment and underpins health and wellbeing.  Crucially, it is also our life support system, regulating the quality of our air, water and soils.

For projects where the potential impact on a local economy is broad and much more than simply about indirect jobs, during 2009/10 GENECON has developed a benefits framework approach to monetise the range of potential economic impacts in order to calculate public sector benefit value created.  This approach has been agreed in detail with BIS economists, and has been adapted in GENECON's work to build a 'Toolbox' of valuation methodologies for GI investments.

This work has been undertaken for a broad steering group of five RDAs, the Northern Way, Natural England, CABE and Defra, and has been driven by growing recognition that GI is multi-functional delivering a wide range of benefits, and that by grouping them together will be understandable for potential funders.  GENECON have led a process of 'Value for Money testing' across a range of projects within the North West, North East and East London's Green Grid using the Toolbox methodology.

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